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EnglishEdit

Part or all of this entry has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.
(See the entry for prepossess in
Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.)

EtymologyEdit

pre- +‎ possess

PronunciationEdit

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VerbEdit

prepossess (third-person singular simple present prepossesses, present participle prepossessing, simple past and past participle prepossessed)

  1. To preoccupy, as ground or land; to take previous possession of.
  2. To preoccupy, as the mind or heart, so as to preclude other things; hence, to bias or prejudice; to give a previous inclination to, for or against anything; especially, to induce a favorable opinion beforehand, or at the outset.
    • 1749, [John Cleland], Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure [Fanny Hill], London: Printed [by Thomas Parker] for G. Fenton [i.e., Fenton and Ralph Griffiths] [], OCLC 731622352:
      I was no novice in these matters, since he had taken me out of a common bawdy-house, nor had I said one thing to prepossess him of my virginity
    • 1898, Winston Churchill, chapter 5, in The Celebrity:
      Then came a maid with hand-bag and shawls, and after her a tall young lady. [] She looked around expectantly, and recognizing Mrs. Cooke's maid [] Miss Thorn greeted her with a smile which greatly prepossessed us in her favor.

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